Experiencing Great Architecture and Creative Built Environments

Zaha Hadid

Broad Art Museum (2012)

Zaha Hadid, Architect

Michigan State University Campus

East Lansing, MI

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Photographs taken March 28 and April 20, 2013

The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum is an interesting shiny jagged object designed by a bold strong personality. Hadid’s object seemed small during construction, and as the pleated stainless steel went up, it seemed too busy. I thought the starchitect created an attention grabbing sculpture, and it’s angular shape would create awkward spaces that the collection would be forced into.

Once I was able to experience the interior I was pleasantly surprised. It is a series of distinct galleries on three floors (including the basement) angled around a sculptural grand stairway. Some of the galleries are windowless and quite intimate, while others are grand with bold pleated windows and balconies overlooking them. The artwork feels as if it really belongs in the spaces, with some being installations actually created on the walls. There are some platforms which are extensions of the black metal archway casings and provide an elevated base for sculptural pieces. There is even a new media gallery with video installations in the lower level.

Surprisingly there is even room for a cafe, creating an area for receptions and gatherings with overflow space out into a courtyard. What seemed small from the outside, turned out to be much larger than expected.  It is much more than a sculptural object, it is truly a museum which displays the artwork beautifully – but I do still think the shiny jagged stainless steel siding is a little too busy…


Broad Art Museum (Under Construction)

Zaha Hadid, Architect

Michigan State University Campus

East Lansing, MI

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Photographs taken July 5, 2012

On a Roadtrip to West Michigan, I stopped in East Lansing to check up on the progress of the Broad Art Museum on the Michigan State University campus in East Lansing.

Still alot of work to do.

Enjoy the construction progress photos, and when it is open, I will update this post and provide my comments on the building and space within.


Contemporary Arts Center (2003)

Zaha Hadid Architect

44 East 6th Street, Cincinnati, OH

Aerial View and Directions

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Last visited March 19 2012

I have visited the CAC many times while in Cincinnati visiting friends. I cannot believe it has been open almost 10 years. It seems at though I never get great photos for some reason. There are the odd large spherical streetlights seemingly in the way of all exterior shots, not to mention the traffic and trucks stopped on the street. I have posted these from my recent trip hoping they give some impression of the building and space inside.

Zaha’s first building built in the US I think has held up pretty well. It almost seems a little timid now, but that could be that I am so used to it. (I recently visited the now under construction Broad Museum of Art on the Michigan State University campus in East Lansing by Zaha. That building looks like it will be a bold jarring presence on campus, the same feeling I remember of the CAC when I first saw it. I will post some progress photos soon) The CAC really fits into the Cincinnati streetscape well.

Inside the museum offers a variety of gallery experiences. Even if you have just a few minutes, you can experience the first floor for free and get a feel for Zaha’s complex angular composition with the floor turning up the wall on the north side.

I stop in every time I am in Cincy, and it still is an exciting experience. I cannot wait to see the completed museum in East Lansing, and experience Zaha’s more mature/developed style in comparison.